Lost Week: The Eleventh
October 27th – October 31st, The Eleventh Week of School
Monday, October 27th No teaching time. The DRA Reading Assessments were due by 2 pm, they said, and of the 16 students who were not reading at grade level according to previous assessments such as the spring CSAP tests and/or the May benchmarks and/or the September benchmarks, I had only measured the reading deficits of 7 students with the DRA test. There were 9 left on my list, and one had been suspended for the day, so I was able to give the DRA test to only 8 students, but that required my whole day.
Tuesday, October 28th The morning was spent catching up with the students’ independent work from Monday along with administering the final DRA to the suspended student who had returned, unrepentant and low functioning, barely able to scribble some answers on the test booklet. However, his completion of the DRA made it possible for me to finish the job and file all the paperwork as required. After Tuesday’s “club hour” during which the children listened to Halloween CDs and discussed their costumes over games, I had only an hour and a half to teach reading. In my classroom, reading instruction consists of Literature Study groups. Each is made up of 5-7 students who read the same book in assigned chunks and then get together with me to discuss what they have read. Because of the DRA assessments, it was necessary to meet the current 5 Literature Study groups in a hurry so that I could send them off for their Fall Break with good books to finish. How much better it would have been to spend the “assessment time” of this brief 2-day week discussing books with the students!
Time for C & I: 5 hours.
Wednesday, October 29 Students were off. I met with about 3/5 of the students’ parents in scheduled conferences. Those I needed to meet with most didn’t sign up or didn’t show up. My new plan, which I shared with those parents who came, is to have more parents in the classroom—on whatever schedule of visits they find possible. Maybe their presense can help settle the class, which has proved to be a particularly challenging group, so that I can find more Time to Teach.
Thursday and Friday, October 30th and 31st Fall Break
Total Time for Teaching and Learning this Week: 5 hours